2021-2022 Back to School Information

We are pleased to release the Unit 9 schools Phase 5 plan for the 2021-22 school year. The purpose of our plan is to provide guidance to parents and staff as preparation is being made to return this school year. As conditions, medical knowledge, and general knowledge of COVID-19 continue to change, so will the actions to keep students and staff safe and healthy in our schools. The elements of this document will be revised and updated as more is learned about COVID-19. This plan is subject to change based on the change in phases set forth by the State, the IDPH Metrics for School Determination of Community Spread and/or the Unit 9 School’s discretion.

Thank you for your support as we continue to work through these challenges to provide our students the best possible education in a safe and healthy environment.

Student Registration Information

Assistance with registration after August 5th will be at the High School from 9:00 to Noon each day (Friday, Aug. 6 and Aug. 9 to Aug. 13).

Student Schedule

All Students will attend school in-person five days a week.

School Start/End Times - Beginning September 7, 2021 (*start times are effective the first day of school, August 18, 2021)

Wanda Kendall – 8:30 am -3:00 pm (Doors open for Breakfast: 7:45 am)

Glenn Raymond – 8:15 am - 3:15 pm (Doors open for Breakfast: 7:30 am)

WJHS - 8:00 am - 3:10 pm (Doors open for Breakfast: 7:40 am)

WCHS – 8:00 am - 3:00 pm (Doors open for Breakfast: 7:40 am)

Heat and Early Release Schedule

All students will be released on an early schedule until Labor Day, September 6, 2021. Based on the weather forecast, this may be extended.

WK - 1:00 pm

GRS - 1:15 pm

WJHS - 1:10 pm

WCHS - 1:00 pm

School Improvement Early release days will be the 2nd Wednesday of the month (these can be viewed on our School Calendar).

Beginning of the Year District Calendar

August 16 – Teacher Institute - No Students

August 17 – Teacher Institute - No Students

August 18 - Sept. 3 - Heat Release Dismissal

August 18 – First Day of Student In-Person Attendance, No Kindergarten**

August 19 – No Kindergarten**

August 20 – No Kindergarten**

August 23 - Kindergarten “Meet the Teacher”

August 25- Kindergarten First Day of School

August 18 - Sept. 3 Heat Release Dismissal

**Kindergarten students will be screened during August 18-20. Please call the Wanda Kendall office at (815) 432-2112 to schedule an appointment.

Masks

The CDC/IDPH/ISBE recommend masks be worn by those who are unvaccinated. They also recognize local control during Phase 5 as stated: "Together with local public health officials, school administrators should consider multiple factors when they make decisions about implementing layered prevention strategies against COVID-19. Since schools typically serve their surrounding communities, decisions should be based on the school population, families, and students served, as well as their communities".

Mask use is recommended indoors for students, staff and visitors who are not fully vaccinated.

Mask use is recommended outdoors during activities (e.g., participating in outdoor play, recess, physical education, sports, extra curriculars) that involve sustained close contact with other people who are not fully vaccinated, particularly in areas of substantial to high transmission.

Masks are recommended by the CDC. Unit 9 will follow the CDC recommendations and recommend masks unless the metrics change.

Meals

Breakfast will be served at schools with social distancing guidelines in place.

Lunch will be a hot lunch option with traditional silverware and tray. Seating charts will be used to help with contact tracing in the event of a positive case within the building.

Transportation

Busing will be available with no limit for student capacity.

Parents are encouraged to bring their child(ren) to school if possible.

All students and staff on buses must wear face coverings regardless of vaccination status per CDC guidelines.

Students with IEP and 504 Plans

Due to the nature of plans being individualized for each student, please reach out to your child’s building principal for more information.

Health & Safety

Social distancing will be observed, as much as possible. (State Mandate)

Parents are responsible for keeping their child(ren) home if they show any signs of COVID-19 including but not limited to: fever of 100.4 or higher, cough, shortness of breath, chills, fatigue, body aches, headaches, loss of taste or smell.

Nonessential visitors, volunteers, and activities involving external groups or organizations with people who are not fully vaccinated are discouraged from visiting schools. All visitors must be screened before entry into the building.

Hand sanitizer stations will be available throughout the building. All rooms will also have hand sanitizer available.

Handwashing will be scheduled into the daily routine.

Traditional drinking fountains will be closed. Water bottles and water bottle fill stations only will be used.

Minimize the sharing of technology, supplies, and materials whenever possible.

Protocol following possible COVID-19 exposure, including communication with families and self-quarantine expectations, will follow the IDPH guidelines.

We will forego all Perfect Attendance incentives due to the pandemic.

Cleaning & Sanitizing

Classrooms, bathrooms, equipment, and other common areas will be cleaned and sanitized on a daily basis.

Hand sanitizer and wipes will be available in classrooms and throughout the building.

All buildings will be disinfected nightly.

*This information is subject to change at any time.

The district and building administration will meet on an ongoing basis to review procedures and revise procedures when necessary. Thank you for all of your support as we move toward the start of the school year. Please reach out to your building administrator if you have questions specific to the grade level or you can call me at 815-432-4931.

Sincerely,

Dr. David Andriano

Superintendent, Watseka - Iroquois County CUSD 9